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The Muslim family facing deportation to Pakistan have been given leave to stay in the UK as refugees (3 April 2013)

Date: 03/04/2013
Duncan Lewis, Legal News Solicitors, The Muslim family facing deportation to Pakistan have been given leave to stay in the UK as refugees

Deportation of a Muslim missionary family to Pakistan has been stalled and they have been allowed to stay as refugees in Bradford.
Tanweer Akhtar, 47, said that the support he received from hundreds of campaigners in Bradford had been crucial.
Bradford East MP David Ward was behind the family’s campaign and his office had taken up the family’s case with immigration minister Mark Harper.
Mr Akhtar also thanked the Telegraph & Argus for reporting his plight after he, his wife Samina and youngest son Usamah were taken from their home in Sewell Road, Laisterdyke, on March 7 and detained at the Yarl’s Wood Removal Centre in Bedfordshire.
Mr Akhtar said he had not opened the letter which arrived at his place but he only prayed along with his family. The three of them joined hands and prayed he said and when they eventually opened the letter it said that their application for leave to remain in the UK as refugees was granted.
He said it was an emotional occasion and they cried with relief and joy. Every person who put their efforts behind the campaign had given them incredible strength he said.
In the event of their deportation to Pakistan, he said he feared that his family could have been imprisoned by the state and their lives could have been at risk from persecuting extremists groups including Taliban because they were members of the Aahmadiyya religious community.
The campaign backing their new asylum claim had gathered massive support from the Bradford Ahmadiyya community, friends and acquaintances from Bradford Immigration and Asylum Support & Advice Network and other groups.
Mr Akhtar had first come to the UK in 2010 on a student visa after his family was attacked in a street.
His youngest son, Usamah, 19, joined him a year later, also on a student visa, and Mr Akhtar’s wife, Samina, came into the country at the same time seeking asylum.
Dr Mohammed Iqbal, president of the Bradford Ahmadiyya community, told the T&A Mr Akhtar was the kind of citizen the city needed. Mr Tanweer was full of energy and enthusiasm he said.

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